Fast finish

By Gretchen Salois

Above: Heat and Control uses the Lissmac SMD 526 RR (65 in. wide) to deburr and grain stainless for the food equipment industry.

Extra width and one-pass edge finish enables one fabricator to avoid process holdups

March 2021 - Economic activity in the manufacturing sector is growing. In January, manufacturing PMI registered at 58.7 percent.According to the Manufacturing ISM Report on Business, “this figure indicates expansion in the overall economy for the eighth month in a row after contraction in March, April and May 2020.”

Businesses like Heat and Control Inc. design specialized machinery for the food industry. “We needed a new laser to meet demand while ensuring high-quality finishing so our customers won’t hurt themselves,” says Jessie Castillo, director of manufacturing.

After switching from CO2 to fiber laser cutting, Castillo realized the company would have to consider a different deburring solution, as well. “We knew we needed something that could deburr both sides of material in one pass,” Castillo says. “If we wanted to keep up with the fiber laser, we couldn’t waste time manually feeding and flipping material.”

Over the last five years, Heat and Control installed its first Lissmac machines for deburring and edge rounding at its Hayward, California, location: the SBM L G1S2 2000 (78 in. wide) and the SBM XS 300 Vacuum for small parts.

“The extra width does two things for Heat and Control,” says Tim Corley, director of sales and marketing for metal processing at Lissmac. “Besides processing very wide parts, the other bonus to having a wide machine is that you can process two, three or four parts across the width of the machine at the same time.

“This allows the user to process more parts compared to the 59-in.-wide machine,” he continues.

The ability to feed material through the machine once saves Heat and Control time and cuts back on material handling. “Before the Lissmac, our operators had to manually deburr edges with hand tools,” says Castillo. “There was no way we’d be able to keep up with the fiber if we continued doing things by hand.”

FFJ 0321 deburring image1

Lissmac’s SBM L 2000 with motorized conveyor is used for parts 6 in. long and above. The SBM XS 300 Vacuum processes smaller parts under 7 in. long and down to 2-in. by 2-in. parts.

Across the board

At its Missouri location, Lissmac’s wider bed (dry belt) provides a fine finish. The Lissmac SMD 526 RR (65 in. working width) contains two roller drums equipped with an abrasive wide belt used for deburring and finishing. The machine’s two belts grind and leave behind a Scotch-Brite, fine finish.

Heat and Control is in the process of opening a new facility in Guadalajara, Mexico, where Castillo says Lissmac machines will be part of the setup. “We standardize our machines across locations,” Castillo says. “We implement a new process at our Hayward, California, facility then carry those recommendations over to our facilities globally. Heat and Control has 11 manufacturing facilities throughout the U.S. and worldwide.”

Previously, Heat and Control had to buy expensive prefinished No. 4 finish material that could be scratched during processing. “With the Lissmac SMD 526 RR, we found we could save money by buying a 2B mill finish and processing it ourselves in the Lissmac,” says Randy Gruber, manufacturing engineer. “We can achieve more of a true polished finish without having to pay extra to purchase specialized material.”

Siemens S7 Controls come standard on all Lissmac machines. “This powerful control and touch-screen display allows for quick response when making adjustments to the heads, conveyor speed, maintenance displays, and gives the user an easy process to store and recall repeat part numbers using a QR code via a bar code scanner,” Corley says.

FFJ 0321 deburring image2

The Lissmac SMD 5 includes a user-friendly touch-screen control and ability to store programs.

Research and development

In efforts to develop its deburring machinery, Lissmac thinks beyond what is available in the marketplace. “Our R&D department looked at standard deburring machines [for smaller parts],” Corley says. “Most machines in the market only processed the top side of a part. You would still have to bring it back to the front and flip the part over to process the other side. In keeping with the same machine models that process top and bottom in one pass, Lissmac wanted to develop the same for small parts.”

Lissmac created two machines to process small parts. The SBM XS 300 Vacuum was made for deburring and edge rounding stainless steel and aluminum small parts. The SBM XS 300 Magnet processes steel parts. Both models are designed with an abrasive cross belt in the first head to remove a vertical burr followed by a lamella (mop style) brush to round edges. The part then travels to the part flipper, which turns the part over as it brings it down to the lower section of the machine. The parts travel through another abrasive cross belt followed by a lamella brush for edge rounding. The parts come out the front of the machine into a box on the floor.

The XS Magnet can process 1-in. by 1-in. parts and the Vacuum can process 2-in. by 2-in. parts. “Since there is a flipping device, the maximum length for top and bottom processing is 7 in.,” Corley says. “You can open the flipping device and run longer parts through one side at a time, as well.”

Heat and Control’s Missouri-based facility is different from other locations because its product line requires polished stainless steel. “In order to remove the stainless steel plate mill finish, you need at least two abrasive roller drums,” Corley says. “The first is designed to rip off the mill scale on the surface of the part. The second roller drum head can have an 80 or 120 grit belt to smooth out the peaks and valleys of the first head and give a smoother, aesthetic straight line grain finish.”

The Lissmac SMD 526 (from Lissmac’s SMD 5-series) can have up to five heads to process parts. “After running some samples prior to their purchase, Heat and Control decided on a two-head machine with two roller drum heads that get an abrasive belt,” Corley says. “Their application for this machine was to remove a vertical burr and replace the dull mill finish with a gorgeous grain finish.”

Both the SMB L 2000 and SMD 526 machines have a constant pass. “You can add motorized conveyors to bring parts back to the front of the machine,” Corley explains. “Adding conveyors will help stage parts going into the machine and increase throughput overall, allowing the user to process more parts in one hour.”

Heat and Control’s lead time can be months. Since installing the Lissmac machines, Castillo says customers can come to Heat and Control with one-off rush orders. “We can now get them specialized cut parts overnight—something we couldn’t do before,” Castillo says. “If we didn’t have that laser and the Lissmac, the parts would end up in a bottleneck, and we wouldn’t be able to promise the lead time customers expect.”

Several operators are trained on the Lissmac. “The learning curve is pretty minimal,” Gruber says. “Once we find an optimal setting for a certain gauge (Heat and Control processes from 3 gauge to 20 gauge) or application, we can save that setting so when they run it again it’s a click of a button.

“This is a big improvement compared to what we had to do before, deburring by hand and handling stainless while getting the burrs off,” he continues. “We can take the panels and feed them into the machine by bridge crane, set it on the conveyor and run it through the machine. It eliminates workers handling the material. It’s a significant safety improvement.”  FFJ



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